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Billionaire vs Billionaire: Judge sides with Elon Musk in space-related legal battle

2 years 6 months 2 weeks ago Friday, November 05 2021 Nov 5, 2021 November 05, 2021 9:02 AM November 05, 2021 in News
Source: CNN

As two of the world's wealthiest men shift their focus to space exploration, so shifts the unwavering perseverance and ambition that fueled the creation of their terrestrial empires.

Jeff Bezos' space company, Blue Origin and Elon Musk's SpaceX shared a similar vision in aiming to facilitate NASA's plan to return astronauts to the moon.

But a federal judge decided Thursday, that the honor of partnering with NASA will go to SpaceX, according to CNN

The two organizations found themselves pitted against one other upon learning that NASA's financial state allowed it to support only one company. The bad blood between the two became even more evident when NASA announced Musk's SpaceX as its partner of choice. 

The reason for NASA's choice was no secret. The federally funded space agency repeatedly insinuated that SpaceX's bid was more attractive thanks to its cheaper $3 billion price tag. Blue Origin's $6 billion offer was a little too steep in comparison.

Still, Bezos argued that NASA would be better served by funding both SpaceX and Blue Origin's plans to develop vehicles capable of landing on the moon.

The billionaire entrepreneur even took the matter to court, a move that temporarily put NASA and SpaceX's work on the contract for the Human Landing System (HLS) on hold.

Now that a federal judge has ruled in favor of NASA's choice to use SpaceX, the space agency says work will resume "as soon as possible." 

Though the judge's choice didn't align with his hopes, Bezos tweeted his support of the ruling, saying, it was "not the decision we wanted, but we respect the court's judgment, and wish full success for NASA and SpaceX on the contract."

Details about the lawsuit are scarce due to each company's request that certain aspects of the proceedings be kept secret.

CNN says lawyers will meet November 18 and come to an agreement on releasing a redacted version of the judge's opinion.

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